terça-feira, 26 de julho de 2016

About depression

Throughout our lives we all go through good and bad moments. Naturally we feel happy for all the good things that happens to us as getting into college, your first job and so on. However we also feel sad when bad things happen as failing a test in college, losing our job or the loss of a loved one. When these sadness take roots and extends itself we become afflicted by depression.
As mentioned before we all go through periods of sadness in our lives. It can manifest itself in different ways and experienced in different ways, and levels, by each individual. As hard as it is to realize these periods of sadness are transitory and eventually they go away. They leave behind valuable knowledge about ourselves and the world.

Grief and sadness are also constituent parts of life. As every bit as important as love and happiness and joy. We often don't see them as serving any purposes other than hurting us. Through them, though, is how we grow. How we evolve and learn to be more resilient. How we learn to empathize and sympathize with others.

This sadness however can go deep inside of us and take roots in our minds and our hearts. There are many different symptoms but only one name for this persistent sadness: depression. Depression is a mental state of profound sadness that lingers. It is also considered a mental illness and sometimes it requires the use of medication to fight it.

It manifests itself in different ways for each person, but it is important that we pay close attention to our mental health in order for us to realize them. Many people I know report many of these symptoms but they don't believe they are depressed. Even thought that is a possibility, that they are not depressed, I think we must also be honest to ourselves about this and know when to ask for help. Be it from a friend or therapist or psychiatrist. 

I know many people simply ignore you when you talk about this. I have been told that it is "sissy's talk, silliness" but it isn't. This feeling we experience is something serious and that needs to be managed and, in some cases, treated with medication.

My depression

My depression has been around since I was 15 years old. I became depressed due to understand how problematic my sexuality was and how negative society's view on it was. I even tried to commit suicide back then. I didn't know how to handle my feelings and ended up clamming them up inside my head. I would put on a facade, a mask,  for everyone to see that I was a happy and normal person, while I ignored, and even worst: repressed, my feelings.

Ever since I started therapy I have learned how to deal with my emotions in a better way. I don't repress or ignore them anymore. I try, in the best way I can, to deal with my depression and when I fail I ask for help.

My depression is cyclical, like dark waves that hit me
One thing I have noticed is that my depression is cyclical in nature. It usually is in a moderate level but every now and then it deepens suddenly. It's the cycles which sometimes have reasons (a sadness in my daily life that triggers the worsening of my depression) but many times simply happen. No reason or explanation for them.

During these cycles I don't feel like leaving my bed. I feel like sleeping all the time so I don't have to face reality. It's an escape mechanism. I find it more difficult to gather the energy to go to the gym, and many times I don't go, or even to accomplish minor things. I abandon my hobbies and I isolate myself both from the real life world and the online world.

I know, however, that it is a cycle and that, at some point, this deeper depression will be gone. I don't like feeling this way and I fear those cycles. Many times while I am in one of them suicide thoughts start making sense. I will talk more about this kind of thoughts (suicide ones) in another post, but I feel that its important to point out how my perception about life changes, to the worse, when I am in one of those cycles.

Overall these cycles lasts in average for a few days, sometimes they last for a week at most. I recently have gone through a cycle that lasted for a month and it was a rough time. I imagine that other people also go through these rougher times every day. To them I would like to say: I am sorry, I know how you feel. At the same time I hope that by reading this post they realize that this feeling will pass.

Don't be ashamed of sharing that you are going through a rough time in your life. Find someone, a friend or relative or therapist, with whom you can talk about these feelings.I know many people simply ignore you when you talk about this. I have been told that it is "sissy's talk, silliness" but it isn't. This feeling we experience is something serious and that needs to be managed and, in some cases, treated with medication.

We all deserve a chance to be happy. This happiness may take a while to come about but it exists. It isn't always easy to realize, or find, it but it doesn't mean it isn't there, waiting. We need, just as any other person, fight our way to it. Sometimes it seems as an impossible task but with patience, time and help it is reachable.

I promise to not give up on myself if you also promise not to give up on yourself. The road is hard, painful and long. Throughout it we will find other wanderers that will help us just as we help them. We may not realize it but along the way we find plenty of things to feel happy about. Friends, life companions, work. At the end we hope to achieve happiness.

So, let's go for a walk?


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